St. Paul Avenue and North Street
Since the 1990's, the City has been following a plan to convert the one-way streets in the Downtown area to two-way traffic. In 2022, the City will start the conversion of St. Paul Avenue and North Street to create two-way traffic on both streets from Wisconsin Ave. to Albert St. The project will take place from Winter 2022 to Fall 2022.
Planning for the Two-Way Conversion
The City has been working on the conversion of one-way streets to two-way streets since 1989. This has included planning for the conversion of St. Paul Avenue and North Streets.
- 1998: Downtown Comprehensive Master Plan
- 2012: Central City Master Plan
- 2013: Downtown Integrated Street Master Plan
- 2016: Task Force of residents, business owners and City officials assembled to review the project and concluded with supporting the two-way conversion.
- 2017: Traffic Study
- 2019: Plan Commission Two-Way Conversion Resolution
- 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021: Community Investment Program (CIP) Budgets
Previous Two-Way Conversion Projects
The City has already completed the following two-way conversion projects in the Downtown area:
- 1989: N. East Ave. & Wisconsin Ave.
- 2001: W. Main St. and W. Broadway
- 2007: E. St. Paul Ave. (Madison to Barstow)
Benefits to the Two-Way Conversion
- Easier Wayfinding- Conversion of these one-way streets allows for easier maneuverability through and around the City for residents and visitors and allows for easier access to Downtown.
- Increased Business Visibility - Two directions of travel not only makes it easier to access the downtown business district, it also provides two perspectives and opportunities to notice our local businesses.
- Support New Development and Redevelopment - Developers looking at the Downtown area have stressed the importance of a two-way street system on St. Paul Ave./North St. for viability of a development.
- Increased Transit Safety and Efficiency - Two-way streets around the Downtown Transit Center, as the Center was designed for, increases transit safety by eliminating the number of left hand drivers a driver would be required to take in the Downtown area. This would lead to safety and increased efficiency.
- Federal Funding- Due to a Federal grant the City has received, the majority of this project is funded 80% by the Federal government with the City paying only 20% of the project costs.
Proposed Major Changes
- St Paul Avenue and North Street will be converted to a two-way operation from Mountain Avenue to Albert Street
- W. St Paul Avenue will be one travel lane in each direction with a parking lane on both the North and South side of the roadway.
- Addition of left turn lanes at each of the intersections
- New concrete sidewalk along the South side of W. St. Paul Avenue (Wisconsin Ave. to Madison St.)
Beginning mid-November, WE Energies will be starting their relocation of both the electric/communication lines and gas main. This work is expected to continue through the winter and be completed in mid-May. Construction will begin in the Spring of 2022. Final completion of the project is expected by the Fall of 2022. Weekly construction updates will be provided on the City's website throughout the duration of the project.
- Utility Relocation work - Mid-November 2021
- Public Information Meeting – January 13, 2022 (4:00-6:00)
- Project Bid Opening – Mid-February 2022
- Start of construction – Mid/Late-March 2022
- Final Project Completion - Mid/Late October 2022
Given the size, scope and magnitude of the proposed improvements, the overall project is anticipated to be phased into 3 major pieces. The concept of the phasing layout is to reduce the overall amount of time that areas of the project are impacted, and to provide alternate routes around the work zones for property access.
Phase 0 (W. St Paul Avenue – Mountain Ave. to Madison St) – Mid-November to Early March – One lane of travel in each direction along W. St. Paul Avenue will be maintained at all times for private utility work.
- Private utility work will be occurring within the terrace area, and the adjacent outside eastbound travel lane of W. St. Paul Avenue.
- Access to driveways within the construction limits will be kept open as possible. Access may be restricted to complete work adjacent to driveway openings (Underground utility work). Access to businesses will be maintained at all times.
Phase 1 (W. St Paul Avenue – Wisconsin Ave/North St to Madison St) – Mid-March to Early July – One lane traveling NE on W St Paul Avenue will be maintained with only partial full closures for utility work.
- The W. St Paul Ave/Wisconsin Ave/North St intersection will remain open through this phase.
- The W. St Paul Ave/Madison St intersection will remain open through this phase
- Access to driveways within the construction limits will be kept open as possible. Access will be restricted to complete work adjacent to driveway openings (Underground utility work). Access to businesses will be maintained at all times.
Phase 2 (Madison St – Bank St to Ann St) – Mid-June to Mid-August – One lane traveling NE on W St Paul Avenue will be maintained.
- At the beginning of phase 2 Madison St will need to be closed for utility and bridge work. After this work is completed the contractor will reopen Madison St to One lane in each direction.
- Access to driveways within the construction limits will be available throughout the duration of the work, unless prior arrangements are made with adjacent property owners/users.
Phase 3 (W. St Paul Ave/Wisconsin Ave/North St) – Mid-August to Mid-October – One lane traveling NE on W St Paul Avenue will be maintained with only partial full closures for utility work. Madison Street will be open to traffic.
- The reconstruction of the intersection is be staged to maintain the following movements
- One lane NE on St Paul Ave
- One lane SW on St Paul Ave to the West of the intersection only
- The N/S crossing movement
- Access to driveways within the construction limits will be kept open as possible. Access will be restricted to complete work adjacent to driveway openings (Underground utility work).
- Access to commercial/industrial driveways within the construction limits will be available throughout the duration of the work, unless prior arrangements are made with adjacent property owners/users.
*As the project goes through design/project bidding and more details are known, the preliminary schedule and milestone dates may change.